Mitt Romney issued his big foreign policy strategy. There is actually quite a bit on Latin America, and we can only hope that if he is elected he will ignore the region or that this is just red meat for the Republican base that he won't actually follow. Why? Read on:
--he sees another axis of evil:
A special problem is posed by the rogue nations of the world: Iran, North Korea, Venezuela, and Cuba. Their interests and values are diametrically opposed to our own and they threaten international peace and security in numerous ways, including, as in the case of North Korea and Iran, by seeking nuclear weapons, or by harboring criminal networks, exporting weapons, and sponsoring terrorists. They deny their people the human dignity and well-being offered by economic opportunity and political freedom. They can be the source of intense regional conflict that can easily spread into a far larger arena and endanger the peace of the world (p. 6).
This is almost mindbogglingly ignorant. Equate North Korea and Venezuela? You can be sure that Hugo Chávez will use Romney's comments to his own benefit in the 2012 presidential election.
--Speaking of mindbogglingly ignorant, he wants UN Ambassadors to act like Jeane Kirkpatrick and John Bolton (p. 7) who openly favored bullying and who both basically despised the UN.
--But there is even more mindboggling ignorance:
Decades of remarkable progress in Latin America toward security, democracy, and increased economic ties with America are currently under threat. Venezuela and Cuba are leading a virulently anti-American “Bolivarian” movement across Latin America that seeks to undermine institutions of democratic governance and economic opportunity. The Bolivarian movement threatens U.S. allies such as Colombia, has interfered with regional cooperation on key issues such as illicit drugs and counterterrorism, has provided safe haven for drug traffickers, has encouraged regional terrorist organizations, and has even invited Iran and foreign terrorist organizations like Hezbollah into the region. The region is also witnessing an epidemic of violent criminal gangs and drug cartels, which have wrought death and mayhem across much of Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean (p. 32).
Honestly, you think the drug trade is fostered by Venezuela and Cuba rather than demand in the United States? Seriously? Hugo Chávez is so all-powerful that the rest of Latin America just collapses before him and only SuperRomney can save the day?
I guess that is not surprising for someone who actually claims without evidence that Iran and Hezbollah are destabilizing the region.
And of course he supported the Honduran coup. Jeane Kirkpatrick would be proud:
In some cases, he has actually encouraged it, as when he publicly backed former Honduran president Manuel Zelaya — a Hugo Chavez ally — despite Zelaya’s unconstitutional attempt to extend his term as president in defiance of the Honduran supreme court and legislature (p. 32).
--he says Mexico is a failing state, just like Somalia and Afghanistan (p. 6):
These are states with weak governance that are wracked by poverty, disease, internal strife, refugees, drugs, and organized crime.
That alone merits detailed commentary, but it clearly shows a Romney tendency to label very different countries into simple, alarming categories. You will not find many people who think Mexico and Afghanistan should be put
--we need to spend massive amounts of money on guns, missiles, ships, etc. and the magic of his economic plan will mean the funds will just appear. Anyway, we need all that money to pay for the extensive meddling he suggests for the Middle East. Oh yes, and we need to build the border fence.